The black turpentine beetle, Dendroctonus terebrans Olivier is the largest pine-infesting bark beetle native to the southern and eastern United States. It generally reproduces in fresh stumps and bases of trees weakened or killed by other biotic or abiotic agents, although it can also infest and sometimes kills apparently healthy trees. Its numbers can build when large amounts of host material become available (typically through a disturbance), and black turpentine beetle-caused mortality at a local scale can become considerable. Here, we provide a complete review of the literature on this species, including its taxonomy, host, life history, chemical ecology, arthropod and microbial associates, and management options. We also provide original data on numbers of instars, acoustic signals, and pheromone chirality in this species. Our survey of the existing literature revealed that key biological characteristics of black turpentine beetles are known, but interactions with closely associated organisms, economic and ecological impacts, and improvements to monitoring and management practices have been only partially investigated.